XENA015 Academic Writing Modules: Defence of Dissertation Day (2 op)



On completion of the course, the participants should be familiar with the stages and procedures during the public defence ceremony and understand what communication practices, rights and responsibilities their role as doctoral candidate entails; understand the purpose and characteristics of different forms of publicising one’s research findings; be able to prepare and deliver a press release, an elevator pitch and an introductory lecture; be familiar with the formalities of giving speeches at the defence celebration


Lectures, discussions, practice. The participants will write an introductory lecture, a press release and an elevator pitch as their home assignments.


This course provides support to doctoral students in meeting the communication challenges surrounding the doctoral dissertation defence process. We will discuss and work on different forms of publicising one’s doctoral research findings (a press release, an elevator pitch, an introductory lecture or lectio praecursoria). We will also attend to the defence day procedures, such as engaging in a debate with the opponent at the public defence ceremony or delivering speeches at the defence celebration. Giving and receiving peer support from other course participants is an important part of the course. Recommended for final stage doctoral students.


Compulsory and active participation. Successful completion of core assignments. Final grading is based on the applicable grading scale for the course.